The Yard of Lost Toys, Lviv

When you were a child did you ever lose a toy?  It just disappeared. Did you accuse your brother or sister? Did you continue to search for it? Maybe the toy decided to find a new home on its own like a cat or dog that wanders off and ends up at someone else’s house. Perhaps that’s why Vacily Petrovich​ felt compelled to save two toys he found abandoned near his home in Lviv, Ukraine hoping the child would return and claim them.

Today there are hundreds of toys in this urban courtyard a short distance from The Church of Our Lady of the Snow and Rynok Square where you can buy farm fresh fruits and vegetables every day except Sunday.

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The courtyard was a bit tricky to find because although the address was on Kniazia Lva 3, the entrance was on the backside on a different street.  But the search ended with an​ interesting find.  A treasure hunt of sorts.

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The Yard of Lost Toys

The story goes that Vasily found two abandoned toys and in hopes that the child or children would come looking for them, he placed the safely on a shelf, under a narrow roof in the courtyard.  Unfortunately for the children and the toys, they were never to be together again.

But, something else happened.  Other toys began to mysteriously show up in Vasily’s courtyard.  Some were placed there by Vasily’s neighbours – but, who is to know if all of them were placed or perhaps other just decided to leave home because the children outgrew them, or sadly, they might have been mistreated.  Who knows?

But today you will find hundreds of toys – stuffed animals, tin trucks, dolls, wind up toys, tricycles, pails and shovels and rakes to use at the beach or in the  sandbox.

Take a photo on the swing set or decaying teeter-totter.  Or, if you find the lost toy from your childhood; or one that you would like to take home, you are encouraged to give it a loving forever home.

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So, when you visit Lviv remember to leave room in the suitcase for your new found treasure 😋

 

UKRAINE

“UKRAINE” for many people this word conjures up mental images of danger, strife, poverty, refugees and destruction. Even for me, until 6 days ago when the Eurobus I was traveling on arrived in the city of Lviv, Ukraine.

Why I went to Lviv is not the important part of the story; but what I saw and learned is. When I arrived I was in a bit of a uncomfortable situation, and suddenly a woman spoke to me in English asking if I needed help.  Liliya and her daughter-in-law, Oxana stepped in and became my rescuers.

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Liliya

Liliya quickly took me under her wing and  became my tour guide, history teacher and friend.

Ukraine is a mosiac of nationalities, cultures, religions and architecture. A lengthy history of power and wealth at a natural crossroad of trade routes from europe, the middle east, Baltic region and asia.  It was the center of commercial, religious and administrative activity.  Great buildings were constructed, libraries created, art and science flourished, and the city was famous for the rich culture. And then as with most of our affluent civilisations corruption, greed and eventually war over territory and wealth became the norm.

The Ukraine many of us know is the one that was in our school history books.  But let me show you the Ukraine I saw.  Granted, it was only one city; but it drastically changed my idea of what Ukraine is.  Lviv is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 18 churches reside here: Catholic, Greek Catholic, Jewish, Armanian, Christian and Orthodox.  Perhaps Boim Family Chapel has the most interesting history and unique building.  (it’s story coming later). Read about this UNESCO chapel on Wikipedia or the UNESCO Site

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Lviv also has some fun and interesting things to see.

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The Yard of the Lost Toys.  Another story, another time
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“The Father of Masochism”  Stay tuned for this and other stories of famous people from Lviv.
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The cemetery that became a one-of-a-kind museum.  Another story, another time.

I’m not finished with Lviv!  Looking forward to another visit in September.

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An art contest at a cafe
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A woman promoting a tattoo studio.